Evolution and creation in the arena of scientific communication



The debate on Darwin’s theory of evolution is a unique case for observing some particular ways in which science is perceived and experienced in society. It is a dispute which is really not very scientific at all, since it ultimately derives from the attempt to discredit a corroborated scientific explanation (and to limit its teaching) by fundamentalist fringe groups of religious and political movements of various extraction. However, it is undeniable that the clash between creationists and evolutionists must also involve, in a critical and self-reflective way, the communicative weaknesses of science and its inability to assert itself as a widespread and fully shared culture, as was also stressed by the Nature magazine in April 2005. With an international viewpoint, ranging from the United States to Europe, from Australia to Italy, in this dossier we try to make a summary investigation of the current state of the debate, with a particularly attentive eye on the communicative strategies that contend in the two fields.


21 June 2006



I would like to celebrate not one, but two major news stories about evolution that help further cast the forces of intellectual darkness — meaning creationism and intelligent design — back into the


In their essay which appeared in 1972 in Models in Paleobiology, Stephen Jay Gould and Niles Eldredge, introducing the theory of punctuated equilibrium, stressed the fact that no scientific theory


In addition to their intrusive presence in American schools, creationists - or more modern epigones thereof, known as “intelligent designers” - are also and unexpectedly to be found in other countr


Organized creationism is not widespread in Italy. It is a rather limited resource politicians and columnists draw upon when wishing to stir up a “debate”.


The many facets of fundamentalism. There has been much talk about fundamentalism of late.